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tv   Washington Journal  CSPAN  September 6, 2013 7:00am-10:01am EDT

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♪ us and can contact
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make a comment via social media. if you want to continue our if you want to continue the conversation on our facebook page, you can always e-mail journal@c-span.org. times" thisshington morning
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this is impolitic out -- -- in politico --
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again, that is from politico this morning. -- ais also a site article side article we want to hear from you on president obama's leadership on syria. we are going to begin with a call from new orleans. orion
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ryan on the democrats line. -- ryan on the democrats line. he's doing a good job of leading but i think on this issue he is wrong. the hell bound southerners of theunited states, i think hell bound people of the south are only going to abuse obama because they want to go against him. that is what i have to say. stephen inis maryland on the republican line. good morning. i just want to say that i think obama needs to show more leadership. he passed the burden off the congress and we already know that congress hasn't been showing great leadership in the past couple of years. if north korea and south korea are as dangerous as everybody keeps talking about, i think it is time to engage them and get
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things over with instead of keep passing it down the line for other generations to deal with. we just engage with syria now , thatal with iran later will give us full proof of what they're doing and will send a clear message. host: a vigorous conversation on our facebook page --
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the next call comes from rick in ohio. you are on "the washington journal." look at the history of this country. in the 1860s we had a bloody civil war more people killed in that than other wars combined. [indiscernible] country, thehis gentleman was talking about the seven people. -- the southern people. topic at's go to the ham, obama's leadership on syria. the phonee, connection is too weak for us to continue. we will move to pamela in
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kentucky on the democrats line. i think the president has not stated a clear objective for strategy on what he believes the outcome will do or what he thinks we will accomplish by this. i believe it will make matters worse. i've not seen anything that makes me believe this will help our country in the middle east. host: walter posts on facebook -- chuck in dayton ohio tamara on the republican line. -- dayton, ohio on the republican line.
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think it's time we pull out of the middle east altogether and just wash our hands of it. the president is doing the best job he can. the congress and senate do nothing at all. they are going to make the black man look bad in the white house. host: john in spring lake, carolina on the independent line. caller: thank you for taking my call. i think president obama has en thechoices and i liking crisis to a chess game. he can come up with a diplomatic orution with the russians you take a piece and you move it and you see how your opponent
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responsds. i think he should leave the -- leave thehould warships off the coast of syria. just like chess, you move these pieces around the board and you see how your opponent response. if barack obama does nothing it is leads to warships there -- there's a possibility of assad using chemical weapons again. if he does not use chemical weapons because the warships are off the coast, that acts as a deterrent. i thing the warships just being there may be the solution. host: john posts on facebook --
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those are some of the facebook posts that we have gotten already this morning. you can continue the conversation. it will be on our facebook page, facebook.com/cspan. times" -- hington
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that is the story this morning in the washington times. this is in "the new york times" -- nancy from illinois, democrat -- president obama
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continues to provide excellent leadership, in my opinion. one of my favorite things is that he is pro-that we come independent with our energy is much as possible. i think he is going to go down is famous for this. he is done at more than any previous president. the second thing i loved about president obama is he doesn't feel like we have to be the world's police man, so i just hope we can continue to be balanced in this and give them a message that we are not happy with this but keep the balance that we are not the world's policemen. host: many as in texas on our republican line. you're on the washington journal. what is your thoughts? caller: good morning. ultimately i think his leadership in syria needs to be laid out. we have spoken that we do not want something to escalate and what's not.
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time, we need an agenda for leadership credibility thing. america's credibility is at stake now. america could -- america's going to go down as a -- as not having credible facts. i think his leadership has proven that has been proven through his presidency. now he needs to have something set in place with the american people can ultimately say, yes, we have all the right to go in there. host: from politico --
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from the hill this morning, nancy pelosi is highlighting the restrictions of the senate use of force --
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what do you think about the president's leadership on syria? caller: i find it interesting , congress, opinion and international opinion, everyone seems to agree it is a silly idea to go in here and do anything. for various reasons. just wonder, based on all the facts we have laid out on the table about america's involvement in anything in the is it just one big distraction? it makes no sense to do this. we are getting so much attention on the subject. that is the question. what else is going on? why are you shifting attention this direction? i do not think it is going to happen. i just find that interesting. [indiscernible] host: thanks for calling in.
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in politico --
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here is a state of play on each of the mega issues. on defense spending --
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to a few of the issues coming up to congress this paul -- this fall. roger, are you with us? caller: i was china make sure my phone was up and did -- up. i am in the va hospital. host: make your comments. [indiscernible]
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i think it is going to wind up being another vietnam. i just think it is going to make it escalate. i think our government is just falling apart. host: when were you a veteran? 81.er: from 69 to host: were you in vietnam? caller: twice. host: steve is in florida on our republican line. ,aller: the leadership question the president has put this whole haven't beenns --
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that the evidence said the rebels were the one doing this we would not be having this discussion. it was a convenient reason. it was assad who cut them loose. the american public are not buying it. it is all about redlines and wmds. we are just lying again. times,rom the financial --
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alan in ohio on the independent line, good morning.
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for giving meyou the opportunity to share my thoughts. the question about obama's leadership in syria, i do not think i can judge that. all i can say is that i am pretty much a liberal person but when it comes to the defense, i say stay out of syria. if you want to go back to the middle east, get a coalition of our allies, gets turkey, we were just talking about turkey, get our allies together, and go all the way around syria and go all the way around iran and capture iran finally and get rid of them. the bottom line is stay out of there. if you have a plan to take the middle east and bring its culture in line with respect to human rights am a -- to human rights. host: what are your thoughts on iraq? caller: it's the same thing.
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you have all these countries that are trying to vie for power and they do not want the u.s. there. we need to go in there and concentrate on syria and right -- syria and iran. host: how did you feel about the iraq war? caller: i totally supported it. i thought saddam had to go. when you are seeing what he was doing to his women -- what convinced me was diane fan sign -- diane feinstein. campaign.for the iraq the weapons of mass destruction didn't bother me. the fact we did not find any there, i did not care. saddam had to go. next up is elizabeth in texas on our democrat's line. i just wanted to make a
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comment as we are winding down in afghanistan, which is on the eastern border of iran. as we consider our other allies , we have turkey in the region as well as israel and jordan. there are more moderate states may be in other parts of the area in the arabian peninsula. most are not aware of the geopolitical roles that are play. they are allowing to declare something but they aren't there to enforce it.
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it encompasses so much now once a country is allowed into nato. it also comes with that spots ability. with the g 20, that is more economic. move is of military going to have to do with economics. host: we appreciate you calling in. from the richmond times -- tony in pittsburgh, republican, hello. i feel he is doing the best he can on the situation. it is definitely a mess. and heollowing the law
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could've just launched and it would have been a real mess. host: "the hill" this morning reports -- jacket ohio, independent line,
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what are your thoughts but the president's leadership on syria? lives are at stake. and the a decision congress are presents the people. they should do with the people suggest a stone that suggestion. it looks like people are saying we do not make the strike with syria that has nothing to do with the decision of the president. it has more to do with the inability of congress to make any actions and represent the people for a long time. travis on our democrat's line. hello. this assay, to the president, i think he kind of messed up with drawing a red line. he should have gotten the approval of congress first and then draw a red line. much -- he said let me get
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a pool of these guys before i can bomb you. congresss approval of he looks like a dictator. if he does need approval of congress -- president obama is kind of caught. i think it is a political miscalculation. he looks really bad. a syrian strike may hinge on pelosi.
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front page of "l.a. times." john is on the republican line in virginia. what are your thoughts about the president's leadership on syria. caller: i think we need to take a step back and look at the message we're sending out to all of the other countries. our allies, recently they used chemical agents in gaza. what kind of message are we sending to the rest of the world if we allow some countries to use these chemical weight -- these chemical agents and when other countries use them we get a huge up more. we want a large -- want to
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launch strikes. we need to look at the other perspective on how they will view this. "the washington post" -- rachel is in fort pierce, florida. she calling on our independent line. caller: concerning the president's leadership in syria,
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it it is more of a red herring leadership, if anything. he has led us into a conflict that we do not have an interest in. it is one that is geopolitical and doesn't benefit us. his argument of using chemical weapons as a pretext to go in and bomb assad, this is a conflict that has gone on for muslimetween the brotherhood and whatever regime is in power. they might not be democratic but they are civilized and there are minorities living together peacefully in syria for years. now that is not the case. the fact the president wants to itwhen and support al qaeda support -- is a boring -- is
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abhorrant. host: how did you feel about the iraq war? felt it was misguided, at best. i felt like it was a waste of money. i never thought that we should have been allies with pakistan. that was a major mistake. it is pretty much leading us to where we are now. lots of lives lost, lots of money spent for nothing. marcus is in maryland on our democrat line. turn down the volume on the tv and make your comment. caller: thank you. i just wanted to say that everybody getting on the president about his decision to go to war -- i think everybody is mad because the united states is always the first people to make the first move regardless
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what the situation is in the world. i feel like we should not have been the first ones to do anything. we should be the one that allies and ask if welp want to come in on certain occasions. all obama is supposed to do as the president -- nobody wants to back him up. don't nobody ever want to at -- want to back him up. he got to do what he got to do. i respected -- i respect that. i feel like iraq and everybody around in this area should jump in for what we did. do nothing at all. they just let syria do a -- syria do whatever. respect obama for his decision for doing what he doing. peter baker, as an
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analysis piece in the new york times -- the white house looks up the boat -- -- looks at the boat. at the vote --
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frank is in bakersfield, california on our republican line. go ahead. caller: thank you for listening to my comments. intowhole issue is turning an either democratic or one.lican we need to get out so we can have a win-win situation.
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inspectorson's already have gone in. the moral issue here of the united states and the whole world is to request that either the rebels or the syrian government turns over those weapons of mass destruction. recallu recall -- as you , president bush had the same issue in iraq and it turns out he lost credibility in congress and everywhere else because they never found any. those weapons of mass destruction just switched hands from iraq to syria and probably other countries. allow the government -- -- withoutussia
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having this turn into a political issue for the united states to handle. going in as peacemakers to just have a sawed -- that bad -- have boyd -- that bad little destroy these weapons. taken to wherever they need to be destroyed. host: this is paul's e-mail. several hundred tweets have come
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in. an op-ed this morning in "the washington times" --
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that is in "the washington times" this morning. here's the front page of "the guardian" out of london --
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glenn greenwald is one of the authors of this piece -- next call on the president's leadership on syria comes from daisy in indianapolis, a democrat. please go ahead with your comments. caller: thank you for c-span. i watched c-span all the time. host: we are listening. caller: hello? host: these go ahead. -- please go ahead. caller: i think the president's leadership is great. i voted for him twice and all. i think he has done a fantastic
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job and i am excited and glad that he is sitting in office now. cautious and he is doing what he is supposed to do. even though he talked about the -- line before: to congress before going to congress, congress holds the purse. they have not been doing -- not all of them but the majority of the republicans have been going against everything the president tried to do here in america.
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that the president's leadership is fine and it is not about the president. it is about the laws that have already been drawn by america before the president came about with war and redlines and all that. it was israel who used chemical weapons on gaza and america did nothing about it. i am happy that the president is in office. we going to syria it will be an excuse for israel to go rogue and hit iran and everything else in -- everything else. people are not stupid. they have seen the disrespect thrown at the president since he has been in office. they have seen the iraq situation with george bush and everything, that it turns out to
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be a big fat lie. in,: thanks for calling mike is in carnegie pennsylvania. republican line. president obama does not have the guts, like reagan when he confronted russia. he does not have the guts like kenneth t -- like kennedy in cuba. why doesn't he meet with assad personally? if he is supposed to protect our country against their enemies, russia supposedly not our ally, north korea is not our ally, get he met with all of those people. now he does not want to meet with assad? are you there? host: we are listening. we appreciate you calling him. joseph tweets in front page of "the wall street
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journal" --
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we also want to share this article from "the new york times" with you -- -- "was affected by masked men last night and couple. they broke in two or her home in antique up. -- in anteeqa.
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that is in the new york times this morning. last call from syria. ahead. calling in, go caller: it has everything to do with hegemony. the reality with our government -- if you do the research, all of the military interventions and foreign governments we have overthrown, that we have made unstable using any number of search dishes means -- of -- this isus means another example of the united states, u.k., france alike using -- france alike, mercenaries and the men in syria
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-- neede need to take not to take conventional wisdom. they need to get off of their behind and do some research. we live in an information age. if you look online you will see an example of people being asked -- one of the rebels killed a man, cut out his heart and started eating it right before a camera. ran a piece times with the slaughter of soldiers. these are the people we are being asked to support. we need to wake up and understand that this is all out allrael and taking of israel's enemies. this is what -- that is what this is all about. host: in "usa today" --
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our conversation will continue. we are going to be looking both at the military and diplomatic aspects of it with two guests.
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and latervid barno yoon as a continue on "the washington journal." ♪ collects the ringing of this spell announces the opening of thanksgiving day of the 22nd annual sale. -- its house will always is a shame when we came here to find that hardly anything from the past is in the house, hardly anything before 1902. the presidential palace in columbia has all the history of the country in it.
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every piece has some link to the past. i feel the white house should be like that. concerned,rs who are as first ladies who are committed, and citizens of the world who pledged to do all that is possible to stop this scourge. >> season two of our original series "first ladies: influence and image," looking at the public and private lives of women who served has -- served as first ladies. starting next monday with edith roosevelt on nine eastern -- at 9:00 eastern. >> wilson was so intellectual and he was our most academic and most educated president and the only president with a phd. as a result of that i think most of the books that have been written about him have been academic in nature and i think
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they missed the very human side of this man. he was deeply emotional, passionate, romantic. he had two wives. when his first wife died he courted and fell in love with a woman and married a second time. he wrote passionate love letters to these women. real living breathing human being. i don't think we have seen that about woodrow wilson. collects -- collects -- >> a. scott berg releases about the on woodrow wilson. >> "washington journal" continues. host: we are joined by lieutenant general david barno. ofis here to talk about some
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the military potentials when it comes to syria. when we talk about a limited strike, what are we talking about? isst: one of the questions how limited this will be. what the president has spoken about and what we are going to hear about in the next week or two is what kind of military power we are going to use treated -- going to use. it it is going to be cruise missiles, cruise missiles from the eastern navy ships and mediterranean. these will be launched from several hundred miles and beyond. we have quite a bit of capability and our naval forces in the area to be able to do this. host: what kind of forces do we have? clear.it is not entirely from news reporting we have probably three or four destroyers in the eastern mediterranean with a guided
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missile type. we also have the largest aircraft carrier in the red sea. that has about 45 fighter planes that can launch strikes. i think most of the leading discussion is more than likely toward missile strikes off of the destroyers in the mediterranean. host: what kind of damage can a cruise missile to? help pinpoint can it be? guest: it is very accurate within several meters. in some cases they go 1000 nautical miles. they have the ability to be steered on the way to the target. some actually can be slowed in their movements and trajectory to loiter for certain periods of time. warhead -- a thousand pound warhead is a large explosion. host: if the cruise missile was to hit -- if a cruise missile
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was to hit the u.s. capitol how much would it destroy? a significant blast. it will collapse the capital. host: what about the fighter jets? guest: one of the questions on this entire enterprises at what time do we have to escalate when getting american -- getting breast band america involved? americang brass band involved? you can actually shoot those from over the mediterranean sea as well. the aircraft could play a role but it is not necessary. it depends on how large the president decides the strike will eat. -- will be. has madethe president a decision to use military might right after this chemical attack in syria, were re-ready for it at that time? guest: we have chips in that
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area and based on the crisis going on for some time, those ships or well aware -- those ships are well aware they can be called upon. i think all of our ships are on standby and the question is whether they are trained -- they may have to close -- they may have to move closer to syria. host: this is from usa today. there are some air bases in different countries. here is syria right at the center. turkey is up here. if we needed troops on the ground, how quickly can they be mobilized? we don't have troops in any sizable numbers in this part of the world. we still have some troops in kuwait, which is some distance away. we have air bases where american aircraft is based.
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if we can get the overflight rights from the nations that we would have to fly across, and allow the u.s. to launch from its territory attacks -- those forces are capable and ready to go. ground forces in measures that we might be needing in this campaign, which is unknown, they would be less available. host: what is your background? i am the commander of u.s. forces in afghanistan from 2003 2 2005. i spent most of my time in the military as an army officer. -- as an officer. i spent time doing the closing to free fight -- the close infantry fight. host: you also are at the national defense university. ran theran -- i
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southeast asian center. if you were still active in the military right now and the president came to you and asked what the pros and cons of the military strike would be, what would your answer be? guest: we can certainly set back assad's military. no question that the u.s. military can inflict some serious damage on assad. that is theorces -- pros. the downside is want to start this, it is not clear where the and this. if we launch a strike against assad and agree his chemical weapons convention to use is one that the president that is one of the president's objectives, it doesn't mean we will take away those capabilities. you don't have the ability to do that -- we don't have the ability to do that.
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we can perhaps limit his launch capabilities. but we cannot shut that down without physically being there. that is one of the major cons. what happens after the first strike? what does it cost to launch a cruise missile? guest: they are typically in the 680,000 to $1 million. range airhese long- delivered missiles are in the same categories. there are several hundred thousand dollars. host: how many would you think would be launched if the congress approves? guest: depends on what you want to accomplish trade it is not clear what the overall resolution is going to allow the president to do. not clear how seriously the president wants to damage assad's military. if you want to go after these chemical strike capabilities are you talking one or 200 cruise missiles or air launched missiles to do that.
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perhaps to damage the ground force and it could be larger than that. know i don't know if you general scales from the you me -- u.s. army war college. he has an op-ed in this morning's "the washington post." he is talking about martin dempsey.
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guest: i think you speak for himself. i think the u.s. military will execute whatever mission the president gives them. he has an obligation to provide that to congress, when congress asked for that.
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oftentimes those congressional hearings are in the public domain. the broader issue is that this is a military that has been at war for 12 years and has been involved in long, contentious bloody ground wars in iraq and still of 60,000 american troops in afghanistan. i have two son in the military. anyone is going to look at this and cringe a bit. host: when you see the uss nimitz in the red sea, the uss harry truman -- what is a carrier group? deck withlarge, big- strike capability and surrounded by other ships that can do air defense and submarine defense.
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the primary purpose is to launch strikes to be able to hit targets. airfields inoding that part of the world that can be called into this fight. host: what kind of alert are those sailors on? guest: whenever you are at sea, this is not a pleasure cruise. these folks are launching missions day after day. a pilot will be flying missions most every day. all of the weapons on board the carriers, all the bombs and the practices regularly so they can respond on short notice. ast: how much diplomacy does general have to conduct? i am thinking turkey, israel. guest: there'll be several
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layers of military command. there are geographic commanders who have responsibility for big chunks of the world. discussions are having with their military counterparts about what might be possible for overflight access and for access to bases. part of the job is diplomacy and they will be engaged in supporting this effort. host: if you are a commander, how much of your time is spent dealing with washington? guest: quite a bit. you are typically ready to brief in the morning and at night. you are getting your staff working up different options. you are involved in the military chain of command above you.
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if you are down at the middle levels and below, not really. you are preparing your unit to go to war. the senior commanders, that is part of their portfolio. generalr guest, retired david barno. numbers will be up on your screen. wayne in connecticut, democrat. caller: thank you for having me on. i have a question. i want to see thank you to general barno. a question about the amateurism of the obama ministration. how long can we defense the real threat to congresses refusal to address the scientific evidence that the twin towers were brought down by explosives on 9/11? we both agree that the law of
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physics apply every day. we can understand the behavior of borders and missiles. how long can we ignore the these real threats to our national security, our inability to figure out who done it? guest: other threats outside of the syrian crisis. those to extend from al qaeda resurgence and its power and its danger to american interests and to our facilities and our people at home. budgetarymendous crisis for the military. we have got large numbers of our flying wings that are sitting on the ground and not training. because of sequestration.
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onre is a significant impact military readiness because of budget cuts. we had military folks in here from the pentagon, they would say they are as worried about military capabilities by virtue of the budget cuts as they are about others. host: if the president said we want to change the battlefield, we want to pick the winners and losers. is that something the military would adapt to? or if you want to punish president assad? guest: what is the purpose of this strike? is it to set assad back? i see the verbiage from the senate resolution yesterday as the primary purpose is to deter
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his used to degrade to use chemical weapons. we do not know what it takes to deter him. r.en we go up this ladde you have to define what objective it is you are trying to achieve. they can craft some options for the president. it will be difficult in this case. host: we have a tweet from borin gfileclerk. guest: sharon's is an open -- drones is an open question. they are not survivable in a battlefield where the enemy hasn't air defense network. the taliban does not have shoulder file missiles like stinger -- shoulder-fired
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missiles like stingers. offshore.val ships we do have some ability to launch the strikes without having americans over the targets. host: jim tweets aest: that is in some ways $64,000 question. what we don't know is what happens after that first reich. the military like to say that the enemy always gets a vote. the enemy gets to choose its countermove. "i will simply do this again and again." ladderkes us up this where we have to counter
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respond. it would beart, wise to think about our end game . daniel is in kentucky on the republican line. caller: i was wondering what ssia is allied with syria. what would stop russia for attack against the united states? guest: it would be unlikely the russians would strike us directly. we never had face-to-face shootouts with the russian forces on the ground. i do not think that is going to change now. the russians would work against us in the united nations. they would potentially increase
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their supply of military cap abilities quietly to president assad. i would be more concerned about the iranians taking action. there have been concerns that iran has triggered some agents to be prepared to attack if the united states chooses to attack syria. host: is that part of the planning for any strikes? guest: absolutely. what comes next and after that? this is now a chess game. the military has to be thinking three or four or five or 10 moves ahead. you want to build steps to get there. you need branches or extrusions --excursions. there is a great deal of contingency planning to think
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about all of the possible options. you never get that right. host: david is in joppa, maryland. you are on with the general david barno. caller: obama cannot get his buddy in britain to prove that assad used chemical weapons. certain thenot source of the british toliament's reluctance support a vote had to do with the overall principal that the united kingdom does not want to get committed into another war in the middle east. bay were one of the few countries that joined us in iraq in support and stayed with us through much of that time. they fought with us in afghanistan for over a decade. direction by parliament was
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along the lines that, we have done enough --the reaction by parliament was along the lines that, we have done enough. host: is it sometimes difficult to have allies in the sense of planning? guest: allies are indispensable but sometimes difficult to deal with. the only thing worse than fighting a war with allies is fighting against them. alliesof our traditional are stepping forward to help the united states. the british have opted out of that. president obama has taken the same approach and going to his legislature to get support. when cameron did that it failed. president obama has put himself in a difficult position and will spend a lot of time working to
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hill to make sure he has that support before he does this. host: tony is in pittsburgh, a democrat. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. say the meaning of insanity is when you keep doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. we have heard this tune before. we saw this movie before. think back how we got into a war before. you have to make it look so drastic and dire. you get the people on the side to go to war. that is not what we reelected president obama for. he has to find another way. he said he voted in to think.
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he has to think of another way other than taking us into war. once you stick your nose in, you are in. your last speaker said the other countries do not want to get involved. why can't we have the might to say this is not our fight? why can't we stick our nose out of it for once? host: i think we got the fulpi oint. guest: this is where the president stakes his credibility on responding to a serious syrian chemical attack. he put a red line out that said the united states would react if it weren't occur now it has occurred. that makes this more complicated than some of the other decisions
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to go to war. a very's different set of circumstances in 2003. that will be the tough issue the congress has to wrestle with. host: have we been able to define who our friends and who our enemies are within syria at this point? some of the rebel fighters? guest: in a traditional campaign, we would have an advocate on one side who supported our interests and had a reasonable amount of consistency with our democratic values that we had some belief in. regime that we would have an association with and would be democratically inclined. the syrian rebels are a mishmash of different groups. that have the callers that pointed out the executions that
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some of the rebels have done that have been on the front page of american newspapers. also the syrian opposition. this would be the group we would be supporting to help topple assad. there is a sworn and group that supports the head of al qaeda and his objectives. we are in a difficult position. the regime has done terrible things but the opposition is doing some terrible things, as well. host: john from los angeles. caller: hello. i have a couple of points to make. there is one war, disaster is a long conflict. to be in such a long conflict in
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the past 10 years, that has been detrimental to our military capabilities. today there was a christian village that was bombed and strongest alhe qaeda force, the opposition to assad. qaeda isfacts show, al the strongest force. any help that we would give would be going to them. why would we help terrorists? we need to stay out of it. guest: it circles back to the question we just spoke about. the opposition groups we would be supporting are not groups we have a lot of confidence in in terms of their human rights values. some of the strongest groups are the most extreme.
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at least one of those is an al qaeda affiliate. we have a choice between several bad options in supporting those elements. host: we have a tweet about breaking news. i do not know the source of the story. indication on impending war? guest: we will see. the u.s. has significant diplomatic presence in lebanon. this may be a one-off. i would look for a trend before i jump to any conclusions. host: this is an e-mail from lori in indianapolis.
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guest: a huge number of issues attacking the president of another country. the united states is bound by international law to not do such things. we are going to have to look at that carefully. to find assad would be difficult enough. a strike that was intended to assassinate or remove the head of another state that we are not difficulth would be a threshold for the united states to cross. host: ronald, arlington, virginia. you are on "washington journal." caller: good morning. i feel when you first started talking about the pros and cons,
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i believe you glossed over the cons a little bit. you did have an opportunity to talk about it. i want to ask a couple of pointed questions. what would the second, third order of sex be? would you accept the risk to punish this regime? what is the consequences? if we didn't know chemical weapons were being moved in large quantities, how would we know they wouldn't be overrun by a terrorist organization? what about hezbollah and sabotage? we cannot be worried that syria is going to attack us. what is the second or third order of facts? that is the most important thing. guest: great question.
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the downside risk of this attack are very significant. that is one reason why we're having this great debate. the president put this to the congress for a vote. you could easily see this begin to expand into a wider regional war. we could see american interests raq.cked in i we could see hezbollah begin to attack american or israeli interests in other parts of the region. we could see a greater refugee flows go into the neighbors as a result of conditions worsening. we could also see the united states would be prompted to do another strike, yet another strike to escalate the american
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presence to try to have some results that are favorable to the united states. that will make this an important debate for americans in this country. host: are there comparisons to libya?o kosovo, to guest: i am reluctant to draw too many comparisons. there are parts of wars that resemble each other. there are some significant differences. i am worried that success we have with the libya campaign a couple of years ago which involved us using air power. the rebel forces helped to overrun the regime. i think that has put a flavor in this debate that is probably excessively optimistic in terms of what could happen to syria.
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syria has a tougher military than libya. i do not think the same kind of quick results to be achieved. host: john from new jersey sent in this e-mail. guest: i did not serve in iraq. i have many friends that did. iraq is still in the midst of some internal bloodshed. it is probably best for the united states if we do not have 10,000 american troops in the middle of that. the u.s. continues to advance its interests through its and this he -- embassy in baghdad.
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they have now fallen back into greater bloodshed, which i think is tragic for them. that,just to follow up on we have this tweet. guest: i think that is a great question. there are indications that it will. it will not look like the jeffersonian democracy we have in this country. i think there is a better than even chance that that is going to survive. host: next call comes from jesse in new york, democrat. we are listening. caller: hello. here is my question. are they worried that maybe the strike in syria might cause russia to want to now react? what if they find this as disrespectful?
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they are telling us they do not want us to attack or to do anything. why don't we stay out of it? obama are so eager to fight this war, why don't they fight themselves? host: we got the point. thank you. guest: all the military targets around the country and the middle east are laying out there mean points of impact and putting their target crosshairs on the military targets in syria. be ais moving forward to bigger battle that we thought it was even two or three weeks ago. how do we respond? this is a fight for the survival of the assad regime.
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he will pull out all of the stops in order to stay in power. rusher will be a part of that. -- russia will be a part of that. i know the president is speaking with president putin right now. i think they will continue to support syria. host: we have an e-mail from frank. guest: that is a great military question. we have the ability to launch standoff missiles from well thatore by our aircraft will fly into syrian strike targets. they have hundreds of miles in a range. we never have to go over syrian
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airspace to launch those missiles. if a campaign gets big enough, you have to do a longer term campaign, you have to have aircraft over the targets. gene on the republican line. caller: good morning. i want to thank general barno for his years of service and thanks to c-span. i have a couple of questions. can you tell the audience the capability of the russian and the chinese fleets that may be in the area or where the destroyers are? that is one question. two rows ofsee ribbons on his chest. it doesn't look like he has set
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a lot of military experience, battle experience. what do you know about him and is he qualified to have that post? thank you. host: are you retired military? caller: i am ex-military. guest: great questions. i know general dempsey very well. he only wears two rows of ribbons by choice. he has had several tours in iraq, fighting on the ground as an army general officer. you see all the other generals wearing five or six or seven rows of ribbons. he is sending a signal about appearances and about his young soldiers who don't have 10. rows of ribbons
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experience and more than many. the chinese do not have any fleet capability in the mediterranean. they have a limited number of assets in the arabian sea. they are very modest and single ship operations. the russians are moving some ships into the mediterranean. their presence when not be as substantial as the u.s. presence. they are interested and are starting to play a role. more towards intimidation than capabilities. host: back to this map. this is probably available on the "usa today" website. iran has cruise missiles. if those happen to be fired at
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are our shipsps, defensible? guest: absolutely. we had a navy destroyer that was attacked i and iraqi aircraft and nearly sunk. the navy has tightened up their procedures ever since. all of our ships are prepared to defend themselves at any time. i do not think the arabians would do that -- i do not think the iranians would do that. that would be a direct attack on the united states. all of the aircraft are ready to fight and prepared to defend themselves. tennessee.from caller: thank you for taking my call. any time mr. obama is in
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trouble, he looks to change his track and the focus is the media. this war has been going on for almost three years in syria. bashar al-assad has used chemical weapons and has killed thousands of people. why is it right now this is important? to distract the media and everybody's focus on what is going on in the states right now. the spying scandal, so many scandals going on. has the power to do that. the congress, the senate, the media. it has been going on for three years. i feel suspicious about that. i do not think he will hit bashar al-assad.
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he would have done it by now. guest: that is a good question. events.ts are driven by by syrianal attack forces about three weeks ago that killed upwards of 1000 civilians in a damascus suburb and injured many more beyond that. that was an order of magnitude of a chemical strike that we have not seen before. that was an indisputable crossing of the red line the president put out. i do not think that was something the administration expected. host: have we telegraphed or had too much public debate on this issue? guest: i do not think so. something that we
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are going to surprise anybody if we do the strike. but when and where we do it will be a surprise. i think the debate is very healthy. the american people and the congress has engaged in a discussion about going to war and the use of military force. congress has constitutional responsibilities and the president has asked them to play in this. i think that is healthy for this country in a broader sense. dawn, ast call is democrat. caller: thank you for serving our country. you have a very difficult job ahead of you. american, i do not agree
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we should go into syria. i believe these people have been fighting for decades among each other. it is a civil war. what is going to happen if we strike them? what are we going to accomplish, is the worry here. when we pull out, are they going to continue to fight? i believe there is no solution to this problem. guest: it gets back to the justification for making this strike and how it will affect the long-term goals of the united states with regard to the syrian conflict. that maybe the crucial question. how would this strike fit into the bigger nature? it will help us gain our goals and support our interest in the
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region. host: let's finish out with three tweets. tranquility.sea of idea we're starting to see is that perhaps the president has asked the target tears to expand the number of targets out there and they include things like the syrian command and control headquarters and probably some of the defense establishments, command and control, air force, ground forces. that is part of what the choices are. the high-value targets -- we have to decide what we are trying to achieve. only going after prevention of further chemical strikes?
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that gives us a different blueprint. always trying to prevent assad from dominating the opposition militarily? we have to see the purpose of the strike and how we are going to lay out the blueprint to achieve that purpose. host: we have another tweet. math inough to do the public or in my head. secretary hagel has been on record saying the strikes would cost in the tens of millions of dollars. that sounds about right. i am not sure that is part of our military or overall strategy for the region. we have studied assad for a long
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time. israel has studied assad for a long time. i think we have to make our best guess is and move forward and have those contingency plans to deal with after we do the strikes, should we choose to make that decision. host: we have been talking with david barno, a senior fellow with the center for new american security. thank you for your time. we are going to be looking at some diplomatic efforts in just a minute with sangwon yoon of bloomberg news. after that, u.s. households. the jobs numbers came out. here it is.
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host: this is recorded by the bureau of labor statistics. we'll be right back as we continue the "washington journal ." >> c-span. we bring public affairs events from washington directly to you, putting you in the room at congressional hearings, white house events, briefings, and conferences, and offering complete gavel-to-gavel coverage of the u.s. house, all as a public service of private industry. we're c-span, created by the cable tv industry 34 years ago and funded by your local cable or satellite provider. and now, you can watch us in h.d. >> only the most willful desire to avoid reality can assert that this did not occur as described or that the regime did not do
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it. it did happen. the assad regime did it. i remember iraq. secretary hagel remembers iraq. general dempsey especially remembers iraq. and the special way because we were here for that vote. we voted. to never are sensitive again asking any member of congress to take a vote on faulty intelligence. intelligenceur community has scrubbed the evidence. we have a classified unprecedented amounts of information and we asked the american people and the rest of the world to judge that information. hageln kerry and chuck from tuesday's committee hearing on syria, starting saturday at 10:00 a.m. eastern.
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the impact of foreclosures and evictions in african-american communities, saturday at 7:30. tell -- murder of anna emmitt till, sunday at 1:00 p.m. >> "washington journal" continues. host: now joining us is sangwon yoon from bloomberg news as we continue to look at syria with a diplomatic focus. how did the president do in st. petersburg? how is he doing, i should say? it looks like syria was not mentioned in the g 20 communiqué. the turkish prime minister
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said leaders agree that some operation is needed to respond to the chemical weapons used by the assad regime, which is what turkey was claiming. president obama has not met with putin. he cancel the summit we signal that was planned for the g 20. there has not been as much diplomatic progress as one might have hoped. host: what about in the u.n.? any efforts there diplomatically? guest: any efforts the security council to describe that has been stalemate, deadlock, paralysis. there has not been much progress. u.s. ambassador to the united
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nations came out with very strong words repeating that russia is holding the council hostage, which makes the u.s. toe no viable way forward reach some kind of agreement. that implies the u.s. will act without approval from the security council. host: what does that mean diplomatically? that: i guess it means there needs to be some agreement reached if there will be a diplomatic solution to this it would have to be done at the theater level. -- at the leader level. they have been watching what is going to happen at the g 20. there hasn't been much progress. any discussion for the resumption of peace talks in geneva, it looks like the prospects for that are
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challenging. that is what ambassador powers said yesterday. it will be challenging to sit down with the assad regime in the wake of a monstrous gas attack in the mosque is -- in damascus. the president of the council is not planning to hold a meeting on syria unsold there is some development in congress in d.c. host: i want to get your reaction to what chuck hagel talk about diplomatic efforts. [video clip] a number of tracks that we are on right now to accomplish what you are talking about. the diplomatic track like secretary kerry has been ongoing and intense. our reaching out to our allies all over the world.
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with 15 asia last week all overinisters from asia pacific. we were discussing this. they were leaders of countries in that area. have beenllies talking through our counterparts from countries all over the world. what the white house and the president are doing. working through institutions. we are still involved in the united nations. those tracks are still being run. host: sangwon yoon? guest: right. , the u.s. mission hopes that a series of briefings to explain and they brought in officials from d.c., to explain what the u.s. has cited as how regimee that the assad
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was responsible for the attack. again, whatis that the u.s. faces is russian opposition to any sort of blaming on the assad regime for being responsible for the chemical attacks. president putin said russia would consider a military strike perhaps against syria if there is security council approval. a foreign minister said there is a chest but verify relationship with the u.s., which i am assuming that russia wants to see more verification of the evidence the u.s. has been fighting. that refers to the inspection team when they ended their on- about aveys in syria week ago, 10 days ago.
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u.n. officials say it will take at least two weeks. the inspection team is under tremendous pressure from the world to get the results out soon. the expectation is going to be wednesdayweeks from and that is the operating deadline. it is going to be interesting to what the results of the inspection report will be. who was responsible for the chemical attack? is that going to be enough for russia to verify what the u.s., france, and other nations have been saying, that assad has been responsible?
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there has been in france in pointing blame at the assad regime. it comes down to the united nations to confirm inferences that have been made. it has been clear that will happen. host: is it significant that the u.s. will be holding its annual meeting by about that time in new york city? guest: sure. if the inspection team meets the operating deadline, that comes about five to six days ahead of the general assembly. president obama is expected to speak september 24 to address the general assembly. i am going back to what i said. agreement on syria is going to have to take place at a higher level then on voice at the u.n. president putin is not scheduled to attend the general assembly.
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is unclear there will be more progress. depending what the inspection team reports the results are, how is president obama going to address the general assembly? is that going to trigger a series of speeches by other states on the u.s. continuing to plant a u.s. response to the chemical weapons attack in syria? that is going to be the big issue at the general assembly. host: what about in the middle east? is the arab league active at all? where do they stand? guest: we will have to see. secretary kerry will be meeting representatives and perhaps he will make some progress there. so far the arab league wants to see more of you and involvement. some key influential members of
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that leak had been saying they are against foreign military intervention in syria. it is difficult to say the u.s. has the support of the arab league. thesecretary-general said u.s. is planning a limited strike which will not involve or call for a wide participation of nato in an expanded series of operations. administration works hard to build support of theyess, it is unclear have been successful in doing so yet. is their potential for a diplomatic solution to this issue right now? that'stalking to do but
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and they always hope for -- talking to diplomats and they are always hoping for a diplomatic solution. -- there has not been progress on that front. right now we have to wait and see if president obama is able to get support and approval from congress. that will give -- that will be the key determining factor on the prospects for that. uk. does not see a military solution to the syrian turmoil. it is unclear when there is no progress on geneva and there has not been four months, how do they see the strike adding value to bringing closure to the turmoil?
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like the general said, we need to see more clarity on what president obama's end game. is is.he purpose of th host: our guest is sangwon yoon from bloomberg news. also work for the associated press and is responsible for of news on coverage the korean an insula and the diplomatic correspondent based in new york. ronald from michigan, a democrat, you are first up. caller: good morning. span. god for c- i do not agree with anything going on right now. i do not believe we need to do anything militarily in syria. is there anything we can do to
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lessen the steam of the gases and things that are used over there, like sending a solution to wash themselves and to protect themselves when an attack is imminent? things like that. i will wait for your comments. host: sangwon yoon? guest: sure. somen. has been marking traffic milestones. to me and child refugees and point 25 million people inside syria who have been internally displaced. there might have been much progress on the diplomatic front. we have to know the amount of humanitarian work they are doing in syria. the chief was in syria in sa to provide support to some 4500 staff working in syria to help
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the people suffering from the civil war. the u.s. has the number one donor for humanitarian efforts in syria. the u.k. has been number two. diplomats talk about increasing that. tos amount is very short what the u.s. has been appealing for and what they need. be oflly this effort will some help. host: and on wednesday was this pretty dramatic photo of a refugee camp in jordan. you can see these are all houses or tents. is a chart this showing how people have been displaced from syria. about 2 million syrians have fled the country.
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5 millionmillion -- 4.2 are displaced inside syria. about has received 464,000 people. egypt. to when you look at the number two 720,000. that is a really tiny country. that is like a brand-new city popping up. guest: exactly. so many syrians off letting in -- are flooding in. the country itself is struggling. the amount of support to host
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these people -- the civil war has been going on for two and a half years. to house and feed them and to find work for them as the crisis drags on, there is going to have to be some kind of solution to address these issues. we will just have to see. host: mike in arizona on our republican line. caller: how are you? two, then ament or question and the answer to the question. i believe that our president is over his head. as a result, because he doesn't have the strategic capability of president reagan, he has hired
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inferior people to make him feel more confidence. crisis,he cuban missile it was to bomb the missile sites in cuba or pull away and let them continue to do it. president kennedy said i do not like those options. so he said, i want a third. that is when mcnamara came up with the blockade. twore concentrating on options. there is a third. if we think and sit down, there is a third but it takes vision and imagination. host: what is that third, mike? caller: i am calling ted cruz tomorrow. i think he has the most articulate and strategic mind we
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have in this country. there is one last comment that is important. we can no longer as we have said be the world policeman. saudi arabia has 25% of the world's oil resources. it is in their area. they should pay for this and iould direct the activity will be see us think with ted cruz tomorrow. host: any, for that caller? guest: i am curious as to option number three is. is goingis gone and he to share that with senator cruz before he shares that with us. guest: i see. his electionma, platform was that he was going to get america out of two wars.
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now the tables have turned slightly. he is pledging a limited military strike. i am not entirely sure what the strategy is that the obama ministration has for the region. it appears he has taken time to respond to syria. the u.s. has been pushing for diplomatic solutions over the tryingo and half years, to achieve some sort of agreement. i think there needs made from decision the obama administration and more communication. i think they are trying to do that. that is why he went to congress. we should wait to see when congress reconvenes next week. host: we have a tweet from james.
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do they have a role? number one, teaching the rebels. it is unclear who they are teaching. we will have to see how effective they are in adjusting that. i do not know, i think the syrian people need to decide what form of government they would like to see as a resolution to the conflict. help isming that appreciated but it is for the syrian people to determine. host: eight-week -- -- a tweet -- at the u.n., officials are talking about how the most be a listed outcome at the end of the civil war is to see the country divided along sectarian
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lines. the country has so many minorities and because of the different regional holds they , thatby province and city would be the only viable solution. , thatk into two states might not be enough. it is true the u.n. is preparing theingency plans to see how syrian people organize the country along sectarian lines. host: over the past two and a half years, how has this issue been considered, debated, talked about, worked on at the u.n.? i think there was a lot of talk but there were three vetoes that the security council -- at the security council by russia and china. there were many discussions but i think it has been obvious
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there hasn't been much progress. they haven't been able to agree on the wording of the resolution, especially when it comes to pointing blame. if i may be sensitive, there is inittle bit of excitement the gravity of this alleged attack and that it could provide and it just catalysts for diplomatic funds. -- an impetus catalyst for diplomatic funds. be critical to see how this unfolds. host: this tweet the chinese, they have been low key on this issue. to be honest i am not entirely sure.
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i think it is just more correspondence -- correspondence respondents- cor in beijing --there have been a lot of discussions with the chinese envoy. i don't want to speculate. we will monitor what is happening. jane in sunaller, city center, florida on the independent line. i think our problem is not with syria but to the real tiger, iran. there is more threat to us. if those came with it now we will have to do it again. guest: on the issue of a ron, --
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excitement andis cautious anticipation to see whether there will be more opening up of the new government towards the west and more engagement. the president and his new foreign minister, they have said they are looking for to talking. --sident ronnie will talk president rohani will talk at the general government assembly. how they are going to reconcile mediatinga role in the solution -- again, i think we will need to see. it comes back to what the u.s. decides to do and what congress decides to do and how the obama
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administration plans to responsive that. in -- eorge e-mails guest: implications for whom, i need to ask. the president has made it clear deterring about further chemical weapons use. secretary hagel has talked about how not responding to this alleged use of chemical weapons by the assad regime could inspire other countries, such as north korea, to use chemical weapons in the future and continue using weapons of mass destruction. and it is necessary to respond
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to prevent such usage. think that is what the u.s. implication is. also political implications in the u.s. not responding. president obama has already been criticized for not doing enough in regards to how the syrian crisis has dragged on for the past two and a half years. with over 1400 -- citing u.s. -- knows the time to be doing something. be or not be ald military response, congress will have to addle that out. chris tweets in -- the next call comes from
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atlanta, democrat. caller: hi. host: hi. was -- if auestion ,trike in syria was inevitable how do we know if we go after the right and correct people? be casualties and people dying everywhere? will decide be in the unger in the ground -- won't assad be in a unger in the ground? --in a unger in the ground bunker in the ground? ? guest: there have been a lot of
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media reports. a more fundamental question has to be answered before we answer that question. it comes down to what we were talking about earlier, there was a lot of inference that the u.s. am a u.k., and france have been fighting. ultimately the u.s. says that the assad regime has to be at -- has to be responsible because assad is head of that regime. depending on what more details there are and what the u.s. knows in terms of who attacked brigadet were a certain led by his younger brother, then the targets may change their. if it points directly back to the president it could be elsewhere on that front as well. secretary hagel says that the united states has resources that
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allows it to accurately defined what kind of target needs to be hit. we will have to see. this four years on program, ambassador mustafa of the -- the former syrian ambassador to the united states -- we have not seen any syrian representatives out in the media. what about the u.n.? is the syrian delegation active? are they available to you as members of the media? they have been available and recent plea the ambassador made a comment to the press -- and recently the investor made a comment to the press. he talked about how since u.n. hepectors have left syria, was saying that the syrian government suffered -- the
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troops of the syrian government suffered three new attacks by the opposition using chemical weapons and dozen other soldiers have died. he called upon the syrian to add these three alleged new sites into the probe. pre-much asking the inspectors to stay in syria. -- pretty much asking the inspectors to stay in syria. u.n..n. inspect her -- has said heeneral will return. the syrian mission at the u.n. -- they have been sending letters to the secretary- general. on august 31, repeating that same request that was made by ambassador jafari. in terms of being available to the press, they're taking from their capital. they spoke briefly, but not
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much. aside from that, i think what we're hearing is coming from syrian state media and damascus. host: do we know why it will take two weeks to test these results? thet: it comes down to defiance of it. the head inspector of the u.n. teen originally said he would need three to four weeks to complete -- u.n. team originally said he would need three to four weeks to complete the report and a critical way and establish proper chain of custody. he was pressured to reduce that to three weeks. because of the political discussions that are happening and the pressures that are mounting on the u.n., i was told yesterday by officials and diplomats that it will be two
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weeks from this wednesday when the samples arrive at the four laps. -- four labs. u.s. announce what the future course of actions are for the samples, they are supposed to be sent to to lapse. the plan has changed and now it is four labs, including one in germany. the explanation i got for that was the u.n. is really trying to the high credibility as an objective, unbiased investigation into the matter. using four different labs for independent investigation of the analysis. going back to your original question about the delay, i am scientificr with the details. apparently the cultures and biomedical samples that the inspection team collected, the cultures need to us day for a
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certain periods of time -- need to stay for a certain. of time. time. a certain period of for septemberg 18, 19th. they are very ticketless and they need time. -- very meticulous and they need the time. perspective,atic they say it is artie taking too long. september 18, 19th is too long. -- already taking too long. september 18, 19 is too long. diana is in henderson kentucky. echo --can you hear me hear me? we are getting some interference.
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efforts, iiplomacy learned this week that pope francis has met with the king and queen of jordan and he is also meeting with the patriarch of the catholic christian church. the pope has called for a day of prayer for this saturday, the seventh, regarding the intervention in syria. you canndering if expand on the diplomatic efforts that might be coming from the vatican. i'll take my answer off-line. thank you. i am not aware of what diplomatic efforts the vatican is pursuing. i know that the secretary- general has responded to the concerns and the prayer effort the pope had mentioned.
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i do from that i am afraid not have anything further from that on my end. will move onto sam in indiana on the independent line. go ahead. we have had all these problems with saddam and everybody else, why can't we set -- and they are themted and anyone around ,nd just put a bounty on them let their own people bring them court.rough the world
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host: thank you. your response to sam? united nations is an international body that operates under the agreements reached by the united states. agreeer for the states to to try whoever is responsible and culpable for on these attacks, there needs to be evidence. evidenceiting on that with what the u.n. inspection team has to come with. the caveat with this inspection team is that it is not a criminal investigation. it is more about assessing the .acts of what took place again, the original mandate is not to identify who had committed this attack or used
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these chemical weapons. we are not there yet in terms of being able to try anybody in court. i think we are a long ways ahead. number one, there hasn't been any sort of agreement at the security council because of interests for security council members and their relationship with syria. going to be as long way ahead. is therere any --host: any chatter among the nomadic circles about the chilly relationship between president obama and vladimir putin, and its effect on the situation? diplomats have been cautious to say that maybe the thisn conflict and inability to talk about syria -- let me backtrack. obama is not about syria, it is
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about u.s. and russia ties. there has been certainly a lot of push and pull to get rush on board and change its stance to cooperate on the syrian matter. at the moment it seems like the whenis playing hardball you look back to what samantha powers says yesterday, she says she sees nothing president putin's comments on possibly agreeing to a security council for military strike. her interactions with russian colleagues at the u.n. -- it suggests no indication for progress on that front. i think some diplomats are seeing this as a data will between washington and moscow.
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and the u.n. is really looking to the capital to see how the direction will unfold. guest, at call for our democrat from virginia. caller: thank you for taking my call. my question is related to what the gentleman just asked earlier . the idea that we should be pursuing the international criminal court to take action, is that realistic echo -- realistic? is at an adequate response to military intervention? to go to the icc -- there is going to have to be some sort of consensus on who will be tried, howlett will be done --
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how it will be done, how it will be carried on. some diplomats are talking about responding to the general assembly and not the security council for some sort of u.n. statement or resolution on -- in response to this chemical attack. -- could makeway way for criminal action. first we need to know who is being accused of using chemical weapons, the degree of damage, and things like that. the united nations being unbiased, impartial, they're going to have to come out with the results of the investigation the back toolvide fodder for them. again, is it going to be very vague and the wording in terms of being able to infer who was responsible for chemical weapons use if it is confirmed? it is hard to tell. host: finally, this tweet from
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victor -- is that a potential to nomadic avenue e -- potential diplomatic avenue? what: we will see secretary kerry has with the arab league were presented. , they are against military action. they go back to how the united needs to- the u.n. play clear role in responding to what happened on august the first. we will have to see. from what the comments have been coming out from the foreign ministers of arab league, it looks like they are not supporting military action and he really to find a diplomatic solution. host: we have been talking with news.n yoon of bloomberg
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she is the diplomatic correspondent. thank you for your time on "washington journal." morning segment on our program. this is our weekly "by the numbers close quote segment. we are going to look at the changing face of american households, who lives where, why, and how many, etc., etc. one is a sociologist at the university of maryland. washington journal continues in just a moment. >> this was a town with
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slavery through the a colonial. until the emancipation. i didn't realize how bad the chimp crow movement had been after the war in the early 1900s. i found a real shock. was one of the two cases decided by the supreme court and the united states in 1915 for the grandfather clause. if you google "grandfather an oklahoma case that deals with some restrictions on voting. in that case, as well, was a case involving a law passed in 19 oh eight by d maryland legislator, changing the charter of the city of annapolis -- in 1908 by maryland legislators,
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changing the charter of the city of annapolis. they apply only to the city, not state elections. tended to vote republican so democrats in power in the state government and the city wanted to restrict this. in annapolis vote under this 1908 law thomas you had $500 worth of property in $500ity -- unless you had worth of property in the city. and unless you're the sun or descendent of a naturalized citizen. or, unless your grandfather in january 1,ed 1868. to the, voting was tied 1867 constitution of maryland, which allowed voting only two white males. which allowed voting only to
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white males. if your grandfather couldn't vote, you couldn't vote. voted -- if you couldn't vote in 1908 -- if he couldn't vote in 1608 you couldn't vote in 1908. >> the history of annapolis on c-span two, saturday at noon on booktv. this is our by the number segment and we will be looking at american households this week and how they have changed in the past 20 years. vespag us is jonathan from the u.s. census bureau. he's a demographer of the utilities and family statistics branch.
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enso joining us is philip coh from the university of maryland. how have american household been changing in the past 20 years? guest: you can look at it and a number of different ways. the way i describe it is the increase in diversity. we see a decline in married couples with children. we see more people living with the bash living alone, more people cohabiting, more single parents, more people remarrying, more people divorced and cohabiting and so on. countryll be ever in a that be a country of two parents and 2.3 children? that ine came close to the 60s. it was a one-shot. we haven't seen that since. haven't american
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households changed? as a sociologist, what do you see? guest: the standard of living has increased and people have more choices. it is also an increase in tolerance for different ways of arranging family life and there are also some structural things at work. the lengthening. of education, for example, means people have a longer period between leaving school and starting families. 20 8, 33ople who are -- 28, finishing school 33 who are finishing school. it has extended out were as a function of economic fashions. host: let's go through the chart your branch has put together. i want to start with this one. married couples with children declined by half since 1970.
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tell me if i am interpreting this right, 40% of the american population in 1970 were married couples with children, that has declined to 20%. setiate has stayed pretty -- pretty steady. women living alone increased from 11% to 15%. and man living alone, about six percent to 12%. the significant number is the blue line, married couples and children declined by half. is that correct? host: it -- it is an amazing demographic change. there are enormous family arrangements. what we are seeing is 40% of all households in 1970 were married couples with children. that was half over the last few decades. unprecedented- an
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spirit change. bureau is very good at looking at how and when and where. we do know that there are light of factors going on and like philip was saying, a lot of factors have to do with rising education, especially on the part of women, and labor force participation. host: just to give you all an overall view of american households, here are the numbers -- 100 15 million households in the u.s. according to the census bureau. mary couples make up 66 billion of -- and 66 million of those of those -- 56 million households. same-sex households, 600-5000. the census bureau agreed there are six hundred 5000 same-sex housholds?-- 605,00
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about 8 million unmarried couples live together. of those 8 million, most are now without children. who are these people? there is an enormous debt precedent heidi's number so we do not unnecessarily see in the chart. most of them are going to be younger adults. number wes diversity are not seeing in the chart. there are going to be differences between them. the younger adults are most likely to be never married and the older adults are coming into this relationship either divorced or possibly widowed. this could be just roommates or live the out -- or people living is couples? guest: definitely people living is couples. just under half of them have children in the household. this can be chilled and that current relationship or it could be a child from a different relationship as well. host: what is your input on these couple of charts? guest: one thing to keep in mind
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is that the age profile of the country is changed a lot. the reason there is this decline in married couples with children is because they are probably more older people and retired people living alone. onir kids have grown and so and so forth. on the unmarried couples living the census estimate great job try to capture that number. people do not always agree on what the nature of the .elationship is it is hard to capture that. over time we have seen that this increase has been dramatic and it has introduced a new lights stage. host: as we go through the numbers on america's households, we want your participation. the numbers are on the screen --
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we would like to hear your situation and talk about that a little bit, why you are living in the household and how you view the american household today. here thatf charts seem contradictory, in a sense. maybe you gentlemen can help walk through this. a higher share of younger adults are cohan became, is what you have here. cohabiting, and is what you have here. is that living as a couple or living in a room a situation? guest: definitely as couples.
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host: 2.3% of men are cohabiting, not married living as a couple. and women, 1.3%. a higher share of young adults are cohabiting. and then we have the historic rise in living alone. 1960, 13.1% of households had one person. quarter,ll over a 27.5% of households have one person. are these diverse numbers? the rise in living alone is an unprecedented change. -- that ishouseholds up from five percent of households in 1900. that is 23 million people living alone. this is not a living arrangement
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we have seen in the united states before. it is demographically unprecedented. there's a lot of diapers in these living arrangements as well. the largest share of one-person households is adults. -- a lot of diversity in these living arrangements as well. the reasons, as philip has mentioned, is divorce and the rise of divorce in the 70s, 80s, and 90s. men are likely to live alone. if they had children, the child is likely to be living with the mother. by definition that is not going to count as a one-person household. we are also seeing historic rises in the age of first marriage. as young adult are delaying marriage, and they are not living with their parents, chances are they will be living on their own. i thinkofessor? guest:
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living alone is a stage of independence and in its -- and an exciting time in their lives. even for people who are divorced, widowed, would like to be married but do not have a whose first people choice is not to be living alone, the fact they have the option of living alone is still a sign of progress for them. their second choice may be something they're even less excited about, like moving back in with their parents. we find there are people with misfortune or something has gone low -- gone wrong behind the people who are living alone. who may have been widowed, they rather would not have been widowed, but the alternative to where they might live with their kids in an
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institutional setting of some kind are not the preference. living alone for a lot of people is a great accomplishment. the chart, the historical rise in living alone. but he 7.5% of all american households are one-person households -- 27.5% of all american households are one- person households. 35% of those households are 65 and older. we looked at some of the stats why's.me of the what is the benefit of having this information? host: some people are concerned about the direction. if you have been the traditional family on the pedestal, this could be disturbing numbers. for some people this is a cry to action that we need to pull the
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nuclear family back together. i think the more reasonable approaches to value this diversity of living arrangements and family structures and figure out what are the needs and challenges for the people in these different situations and how we might be able to work with them to make it work better. one of the things about living alone is what is the geography of living alone? -- activeve action social lives? who are they? where do they get the services and support that they need? we have to think actively about his growing groups and how to benefit them. there is an excellent point on the ability to live by yourself. one of the things you're seeing in older adults, in particular, is there living longer. i have the ability to stay in their homes by themselves. they don't need to live in an institutionalized setting, they can rely on family members on
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support. there's a monetary effort that they can afford to maintain the house. host: have you looked at the rise of the information age? does that correspond to living alone at all? there is a great book by a sociologist at american university. he talks about the active social life and how technology plays a big role. it is not always as healthy and ideal because you hope it is, but certainly there are online communities that have flourished with this population. i think it has been one very positive aspect of it. 600 5000 same-sex couples living together according to the census bureau. -- 605,00 same-sex couples living together
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according to the census bureau. -- are college education college-educated. 10 years apart in age of same-sex21% couples are 10 years apart. races, it goes from four percent of opposite effects to 12%. what is behind these numbers? guest: one reason we put together this profile is he wants to see how different kinds of couples are. -- we wanted to see how different kinds of couples are. we saw different aspects in terms of their age and race this -- and races. i'm one of the works being done is the suggestion of why there may be more interracial couples among same-sex couples or the larger age difference and it is
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because the dating pool is moeller and more restricted. couples tend to date someone with very similar characteristics as themselves. but with a smaller dating pool, they're going outside of that. that is why we see some of these differences. we do see higher intermarriage rates among smaller races and ethnic groups. it is possible that same-sex couples are less conventional in other ways. one way they are less conventional may be in their tolerance or interest in socializing or dating people with other ethnic groups. hilip our guests is p cohen and jonathan vespa. thetopic, america by numbers. we are going to begin with a call from robert in brooklyn. caller: [indiscernible]
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the second question is do you , getting loweople does and part-time work, it have something psychological do with that? it is certainly true that people who have low wages or unstable employment are likely to live in extended households and have grandparent care arrangements or living arrangements that are their first choice. there are some benefits to that.
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andtimes there are stresses trauma associated with people who would rather be on their own. host: next call is kelly in virginia. myler: thank you for taking call. how many children are living in single-parent homes? host: why do you ask that? caller: i am difference -- i'm curious what the difference is from the 70s. are there more kids now living in single families, which i suspect is the same. host: we are going to show this chart. with childrens is down to 20% as opposed to 40% in 1970. we have 71 million children in the united states.
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21 million are living with one parent. it has changed over time. he have seen an increase in one parent households in 1970. -- about about nine nine percent to 10% of all households. another important finding to mention here is that the majority of children, almost two thirds, still lived with two married parents. professor? why there are to more children living with one parent, 85% of single mother is aies -- partly is it good news story with women's independence and their ability our marriages relationships, which they do not want to be in. it is a story about a relationship and security stability.
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the question for us, again, is how can we make this work for children living with one parent? that is going to involve the whole network of care we require, everything from daycare to education and pensions and all that. we have to realize that for a large and growing number of children, the two-parent family is not their support system. we have to make sure that we have those kids cover. changes inu see american households as a result of federal policy, people reacting to sack situations, welfare situations? -- tax situations, welfare situations? guest: there has been a long history, going back to the major welfare reform in the 1990s, of trying to change family structure with federal policy. the preamble to the welfare reform in 1976 was about encouraging marriage.
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marriage has been declining continuously ever since. people were living in single parent families since then. i don't things changes them one way or another by federal policy. you can research it a little bit. most people do not make their choiceshases -- family that most people would love to live in a stable relationship. they are the best they can to get that done. host: elaine is in orlando, florida. caller: i was wondering if you could speak about the role of men in the household staying together. become from women, they more educated, have more career opportunities, so they can become more independent. i was wondering how men, in response, how their role has changed and perspective should has beenrception
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changed over time. -- can youquestion answer that question yet though guest:\ -- that question? has been increasing in tandem with men. it does not look like when -- look like women are delaying marriage. that has not up in tandem. in a shifting family composition, we are seeing some of the same patterns that are describing women are describing men as well. the traditional attitudes are still very prevalent. you can see certain aspects of relationships. most couples have a man who is few years older, who earns more, who was taller. there are traditional attitudes the present. -- attitudes that persists.
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where wagesples can be a source of stress. guest: you had a chart earlier showing that the shares of married couples have declined. family delayed is not necessarily a family for gone. this is just a snapshot in time. we do not necessarily know what many of these young adults are going to go on to do. it is not that they are experiencing marriage, at all. it atay be experiencing they later point of time -- at a later point in life. here are the census bureau stats on this. in 1890, men were averaging 26 years old, women 22 years old. in 1950 men were down to 23,
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women were down to 21. and today, you can see the chart going up. about 28.5, women are 26 years old. cfo that's why is this? guest: -- why is this? people do like to wait to get married to when they have good jobs or a good job potential. i know my students all tell me they want to finish their education before they get married. they want to watch that from their lives -- watch that in their lives from a strong position. an expensive and beautiful wedding is something people aspire to. you cannot do that if you do not have a job are money. it is also the extending outward
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of education. and the attitude that you do not need to be married to begin your adult life. is there any reason to drop the echo and the turn-of- the-century it was higher than it was in the mid-fifth these. guest: -- mid-50s. guest: this is a fascinating figure. we have part of this method that said people in previous entries used to get married at a very ages,agents -- very young 16, 17, 19 years old. that is not the case at all. the first marriage for men was about what it is a century later in 1990. often we talk about the american family. we compare it back to the 1950s as the benchmark. i think the interesting question here in this figure is not why we are less than the 1950s, but
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why the 1950s was so unusual as a demographic. i would recommend the book "the marriage goes round." a generation of people in the 50s and 60s who got married at that young age had a high level of conformity. almost everyone was doing it at that age. it had to do with growing up and their parents attitude and the great depression and the war. this feeling that they were doing it because they could, because it was the right thing to do, mass media had not reached this point where there were different missions for everybody at different times, a different channel for every demographic group. there was a very homogenizing group in the culture. forces were inl the direction of conformity. it is connected to housing growth and the suburbs -- it is
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a fascinating question. because everyone was experiencing and about at the same time in the 1950s and 60s, that is the reason why we see the share of married households with children was so high in 1970. those are the baby boomers whose children are still living in the household with them. as we move across the decades, those children have aged out of those households. what we're seeing is that large swelling up of the population and baby boomers as they move through young adulthood in the 1950's and 60's. virginia, is in west thank you for holding on. caller: one of the guests was talking about earlier -- i am getting ready to turn 46 in september, i i have been divorced for 10 years, i have my son with my ax -- with
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ex. i love living alone. i can do what i want to do. i can have the guys come over with beer and watch a football game. i love it. host: how old were you when you got married? caller: i came out of the army. i must have been 23 or 25. that is what you did. you went and got married, raised a family, work hard. , whenets to my question -- no onees here lives with me, i do date. when he is here it is guy time. he can relax, and we can do whatever we want to do. with so may divorce is
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that the future of our children, that divorced kids are don'ttanding that maybe i need to get married? going ahead trend with this kind of living? host: what have you told your son? have you told him to wait? caller: yes. basically he is 13. i told him he needs to get college, get an education, get a good job. i said if you find the right woman, and i told him that, i think everybody ought to be married at least once. host: that is just in virginia. -- jeff in virginia. caller: do people learn from their parents? yes. thenot only their parents, culture around them. single parenthood and delayed
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marriage, these are all things that factor into how kids look at their future relationships and what their plans are. one of the interesting things have fewerople children than they certainly did have a century ago. people also live longer. i think one of the ways the situation shows a something new is a longer more intense relationship into generally -- intergenerational he. intergenerationally. these relationships are changed by that, compared to having four children and dying at a young age. host: did you want to add something? guest: the best projections we have is about 85% to 90% of adults will still go on to marry at some point in their life and -- in their life. i think it
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comes back to the idea that a family delayed is not necessarily a family forgot. people are experiencing these major life events. jack tweed s -- jack tweets in -- is that something you follow? we have about nine percent of married family groups and 32% of one parent family groups that fall below the poverty line. nine percent are households and 33% of one parent households below the poverty if we think about it in terms of children, that might be easier. one in five children lives below the poverty line.
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jack is in palestine, texas, good morning. richardson texas. i think it is a married couple. jack? caller: here he is. you one are going to put hold and make sure you are on the line when they come back to you. this is linda in illinois. hello. with the number of children, there are fewer , the futureng born years,in about for the
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-- and about 20 years, there are going to be fewer children supporting the retirees. host: what are the effects on public policy echo -- on public policy echo -- on public policy? caller: our fertility rates are still very low. we are still close to two children per womean. that baby boomers retiring. we have a lot of people retiring and it will be expensive. hard and worked contributed a lot to society and we ought to support them. it is just going to cost them some money. does thevespa, census bureau extrapolate and go ahead -- and look ahead? andyou look at the trends
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do you? guest: we can certainly estimate projections going into the future. it is always interesting look too far ahead into the future -- dangerous to look too far ahead into the future. showed that the birthrate in the united states has actually leveled out. it was declining and the recession. it is difficult to see exactly women and and -- tomorrow are going to do. the caller makes a excellent point. it is the dependency ratio, how many working adults there are two how many retirees -- are to how many retirees. call is in indianapolis. caller: my question is in
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reference to the african- american population. i have seen a timeline going from the 1890s. my question is in the 80s and 90s, with the reagan era and crack cocaine, do you see a decline in married households in african-american households. come from anve african-american household with two parents. i see that is not the stereotypical way. the point.nk we got usually about one in two african-american children lived with a single-parent. we have seen a change in single- family groups. increased? guest:
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that has increased over time. guest: welfare reform was supposed to crack down and make people gets -- and help people get marriedfor them to get by wr children. host: professor cohen, put a period on our conversation. what is the effect on the changes in american households? aret: we cannot assume we dealing with a fixed family structure, and we have to be more flexible, and we have to allow the different family structures to bear resilience to emerge. but we have to realize that not everybody has got the same support systems. that is exactly why the census bureau collects these types of data is so that people can make informed decisions because families have certainly changed over times. host: jonathan vespa is a demographer with the u.s. census bureau, the fertility and family statistics print. philip cohen

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